by Steve Laube
Take the Bestseller Code test. I dare you. [[UPDATE: As of today April 24, 2012 the bestseller code web site is down.]]
The web site www.thebestsellercode.com is fascinating. Through some mysterious algorithm it evaluates about 500 words of your novel and grades it on a scale of one to twenty (1 to 20).
Does it work? I gave it a try with a recent proposal from a bestselling client. I took the first page and a half and plugged it into the test. It scored 20.0. A Perfect Score!
Then I took the first page and a half from a recent unsolicited novel and plugged it into the test. It only scored 4.6…out of 20. I had to agree, that sample was awful.
Now is your chance for fun. Go to the site and get your score. Then come back here and tell us in the comments, if you are brave.
Disclaimer: Do I need to write one? But in case you aren’t sure, we do not use this for our in-house evaluation purposes. A computer cannot tell if yours is a good story or not. It can only compare word choices and number of syllables. It has no sense of style or storytelling ability. This is simply a fun way to look at the structure and craft of your writing.
But I will say the comparison of a bestselling author to an unschooled first-timer (20.0 vs. 4.6) was rather astounding.